As Christ ascends to heaven, several witnesses shade their eyes from the blinding view overhead. According to Tissot, the Ascension completes the “original idea of Creation,” which was “redemption through Christ”; now humanity, too, is permitted to share in divine glory. “The cloud which ‘received Christ from sight’ is like the curtain which falls at the close of a drama,” he comments.
In the foreground of the image, Christ’s two footprints remain pressed into the earth as proof of his presence on earth—and in heaven.
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James Tissot (French, 1836-1902). The Ascension (L'Ascension), 1886-1894. Opaque watercolor over graphite on gray wove paper, Image: 9 7/8 x 5 13/16 in. (25.1 x 14.8 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Purchased by public subscription, 00.159.348
Purchased by public subscription
Image: 9 7/8 x 5 13/16 in. (25.1 x 14.8 cm); Sheet: 9 7/8 x 5 13/16 in. (25.1 x 14.8 cm)